posted on 11/12/2013
Johannesburg: On behalf of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development attended on Tuesday the state funeral for the historic leader and former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela.
Sheikh Nahyan conveyed condolences of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces to President of South Africa Jacob Zuma and to Mandela's family. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
The pace of environmental change in the Arab region seems to be more rapid than in the rest of the world due to the pace of economic and social development, according to the UNEP atlas for the Arab region, released yesterday.
The United Nations Environment Programme, UNEP, and the Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative, AGEDI, supported by the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD), released "The Arab Region: Atlas of Our Changing Environment". The atlas examines the environmental changes that have taken place at more than 80 locations across the Arab region, using a combination of on-the-ground photographs, current and historical satellite images, with narrative based on extensive scientific evidence.
Before and after studies in the atlas clearly demonstrate the pace of development in the region, offering compelling examples of wide-ranging environmental change, including land use change, urban growth, degradation of marine and coastal areas, altered hydrology and shrinking water bodies, loss of habitats and impacts of climate change. The Atlas images serve to highlight the distinctive environmental circumstances and challenges faced in the Arab region, from limited freshwater resources, rapid urbanisation, depletion of natural resources, and the vulnerability of many Arab settlements to environmental risks and natural disasters.
The Atlas brings to light stories of environmental change through images showing evidence of changes taking place in the land, water and atmosphere, and covering trans-boundary issues like river basins, trans-boundary conservation areas and pollutants. It also illustrates how humans have positively or negatively altered their surroundings and continue to make observable and measurable changes to the Arab region and its environment.
Although the challenges depicted are striking, the atlas examines the opportunities that these challenges present, as well as some of the innovative responses that are being implemented in the region.
The atlas also shines a light on the unique environmental issues faced by each country, and tracks the individual progress each is making towards achieving the goal of Ensuring Environmental Sustainability, as part of the United Nation's Millennium Development Goals.
Aimed at environmental policy-makers, non-governmental organisations, the private sector, academics, teachers and the public, the atlas will bring local-level changes to the attention of global audiences and support improved decision-making and policy formulation for a more sustainable future.
The atlas is the latest addition to a series of atlases coordinated by UNEP that began in 2005 with the launch of a global atlas, "One Planet, Many People." This new atlas is an important addition to the growing suite of UNEP atlases that not only aim to fascinate and intrigue readers, but also aim to contribute to a better understanding of the dynamics of environmental change in the Arab region. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
A new multi-facility Transit Oriented Development will take shape at the Union Square, next to Union Metro station in Deira, comprising residential, commercial and recreational spaces, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has announced.
Spread across an area of 19,000 square metres, the Union Oasis Project will be accomplished in partnership with private sector.
The project is aimed to raise the efficiency and users of mass transit systems through re-planning of districts around the metro stations. The project will contribute to augmenting the ridership of the Dubai Metro and develop the urban environment in the vicinity of Al Ittihad (Union) Station,” said Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of RTA.
He added that the public transport oriented development at Al Ittihad Square is set on the model of the Public Private Partnership (PPP) between the RTA and a private developer to be selected in a public tender.
"The private sector will be able to blend the developmental and operational expertise with the business acumen to determine the exact concept and development aspects in accordance with the vision and objectives of the RTA for the location. The promotional campaign of the project will be kicked off on Thursday,” he stated.
The Union Square Project will be first Transit Oriented Development (TOD) destination in the region.
"The TOD concept has many success stories in Europe, Asia and America, bringing benefits to the communities, regenerating areas and creating positive commercial impact for those districts,” Al Tayer explained.
In developing the project around the Union Square, RTA is taking into consideration international best practices with regards to design of transit-oriented communities and will enhance them in consideration of local and regional context and requirements, besides establishing a multi modal transit centre which will boost the business of Deira area.
"The project focuses on providing high-class residential and office environment characterised by pedestrian-friendly roads, green spaces, vital utilities, retail outlets among others. The high population density in the project will contribute to supporting RTA's drive towards encouraging the residents to use public transport means, besides providing an enjoyable avenue for residents and visitors alike,” he further added. – Gulf News
posted on 11/12/2013
The 34th Gulf Cooperation Council Summit kicked off yesterday at Al Bayan Palace in Kuwait.
The event, chaired by His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, Amir of Kuwait, is attended by Their Majesties and Highnesses leaders of the GCC States.
The Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, leads the UAE delegation to the summit.
His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain, His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Emir of Qatar, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of Saudi Arabia and Omani Deputy Prime Minister for Cabinet Affairs Fahad bin Mahmoud Al-Saeed, are attending the Summit.
Dr. Abdul Latif bin Rashid Al Zayani Secretary General of the Cooperation Council for the Arab Gulf states is also present.
The UAE high level delegation accompanying Sheikh Mohammed includes, Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Gargawi, Minister for Cabinet Affairs, Dr Anwar bin Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Suhail bin Mohammed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy, Obaid bin Humaid Al Tayer, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, Dr Sultan Bin Ahmed Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State, Lt. General Misbah bin Rashid Al Fattan, Director of the Office of the Vice-President, Khalifa Saeed Suleiman, Director General of the Department of Protocol and Hospitality in Dubai and Aref Tunaiji, UAE Charge d'Affaires in the State of Kuwait. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
On the occasion of the sixth meeting of its Council in Abu Dhabi, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) yesterday launched a unique web portal dedicated to renewable energy cost analysis (www.irena.org/costs). The portal provides access to IRENA's data and analysis at no cost to users.
"IRENA has developed the most current and comprehensive global database of renewable energy project costs available to the public. Our new portal makes this resource available for policy makers, businesses and the renewable energy community worldwide," said Dolf Gielen, Director of the IRENA Innovation and Technology Centre in Bonn, Germany, and project leader for this initiative.
"The data shows that the costs of renewable energy are declining, sometimes rapidly. Investment and policy decisions can now be based on the latest, verified data from a trusted source," added Mr. Gielen. "Recent cost reductions, notably for solar photovoltaics, have profound implications for social and economic development opportunities and for millions of people's aspirations for a better life. On economic grounds, their access to modern energy should be renewable based," he said.
The new portal showcases IRENA's position as the global source for cost and performance data of all renewable energy technologies. The web portal makes the latest and best cost data, as well as the Agency's analysis, publications, presentations and charts accessible to the public. It provides an important service for the further development of renewable energy globally. Often, the lack of up-to-date, accurate and reliable data on cost and performance was seen as a barrier to the uptake of renewable energy technologies. IRENA's new web portal is ensuring that this will not be the case in the future and the debate about the role of renewable energy technologies in the energy sector can be based on the facts.
The portal is accessible to the public at www.irena.org/costs, free for all users.
IRENA holds its sixth Council meeting in Abu Dhabi yesterday. The meeting is attended by representatives of 21 IRENA Members, elected for a two-year term on a rotating basis. IRENA's Council is accountable to IRENA's Assembly, which will be held in Abu Dhabi on January 18th and 19th, kicking off the annual Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.
IRENA is mandated as the global hub for renewable energy cooperation and information exchange by 120 Members (119 States and the European Union). Over 40 additional countries are in the accession process and actively engaged. Formally established in 2011, IRENA is the first global intergovernmental organisation to be headquartered in the Middle East. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
Woodland Park, NJ and Abu Dhabi, UAE - Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the Abu Dhabi-based investment and development company and Cytec Industries (NYSE: CYT), yesterday announced they have entered into a Strategic Collaboration Agreement. The collaboration will support the establishment of an advanced aerospace material ecosystem in the UAE.
Mubadala and Cytec are exploring opportunities to support the ongoing development of the aerostructures industry in the emirate of Abu Dhabi in the UAE. This includes evaluating the creation of prepreg manufacturing capabilities in the emirate, with the commitment of major aircraft OEMS to provide the requisite assistance and qualifications.
The intent of the Strategic Collaboration Agreement is formalising the working structure between both parties to discuss the key areas for development of prepreg manufacturing, applications development capabilities and people development in the UAE.
Homaid Al Shemmari, Executive Director or Mubadala Aerospace, Communications Technology and Defence Services commented: "This collaboration with Cytec will contribute positively to Mubadala's efforts in creating a complete aerospace supply chain in Abu Dhabi as we remain focused on becoming a leading industry partner in the development of next generation commercial aircraft." Shane Fleming, Cytec CEO, commented: "Cytec's collaboration with Mubadala is consistent with our growth strategy. This alliance benefits the expansion of aerospace in emerging regions of the world, and we are excited to support the development of new composite applications." The composite content of next-generation aircraft continues to grow tremendously as manufacturers look to reduce weight and improve fuel efficiency. Cytec and Mubadala will work together to promote their superior technologies and engineering efforts for selected high-performance carbon composites applications in the structural materials aerospace market. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
Mubadala Development Company's aerospace unit will start building its maintenance, repair and overhauling, or MRO, facility in Al Ain next month.
The Advanced, Military, Maintenance and Overhauling Centre, or Ammroc, a joint venture with aircraft maker Lockheed Martin, Sikorsky Corporation and Mubadala Aerospace, will hit ground to construct its facility at the Nibras Al Ain Aerospace Park.
The Dh1 billion project will be operational in January 2016, and will provide jobs to 2,500 people, said Homaid Al Shemmari, executive director of Mubadala Aerospace, Communication Technology and Defence Services, while giving an overview of the department at the second day of the Abu Dhabi Conference organised by Meed and the Department of Economic Development Abu Dhabi. Ammroc is part of Mubadala's aerospace business, and provides minor and structural repairs to military aircraft.
The Nibras Al Ain Aerospace Park is an industrial zone dedicated to the aerospace industry. Spread over 25sqkm around Al Ain International Airport, the park is Abu Dhabi's Aerospace hub, which it aspires to turn into Seattle and Toulouse, the two centres of global aircraft manufacturing.
By 2030, Abu Dhabi has plans to create 10,000 jobs at the park, which already houses Strata, a Mubadala unit that manufactures components for Boeing and Airbus Industrie. Al Shemmari said Strata will be making components for B787 from next year.
In 2011, Mubadala signed a deal with Boeing for manufacturing and supplying work packages worth US$1 billion.
Two weeks ago, he said on the sidelines of the Dubai Airshow that a further US$6 billion worth of commitments were made with Boeing, Airbus, Rolls Royce and GE, who are partners to Abu Dhabi's ambitions in aerospace.
"This is the partnership model Abu Dhabi is working on,” he said.
Horizon Academy, which is also located at the Al Ain Airport, is a key component of Mubadala aerospace activities, he said as it trained 650 pilots for Etihad Airways and UAE Armed Forces apart from some regional partners. – Khaleej Times
posted on 11/12/2013
Rolls-Royce, the global power systems company, has been awarded a strategic contract to supply Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company (ADMA-OPCO) with power generation equipment and related services to help boost oil and gas processing at the Satah Al-Razboot (SARB) offshore project in the UAE.
The contract was awarded by the Korean engineering, procurement and construction firm Hyundai Engineering and Construction (HDEC) and is the first Trent 60 gas turbine sale to a Korean EPC.
The SARB project will play a key role in boosting domestic oil and gas production in the UAE. Rolls-Royce will supply five aero-derivative Trent 60 gas turbine generator sets to power offshore production platforms and oil and gas processing facilities on Zirku Island. Each Trent 60 gas turbine is capable of producing up to 66 megawatts of power and will feature low emissions technology to minimise environmental impact. This contract brings the total number of Trent 60 gas turbines operating in the UAE oil and gas market to fourteen.
Andrew Heath, Rolls-Royce President - Energy said, "I am delighted that Rolls-Royce has been chosen to deliver the power generation required for the milestone SARB project. This contract reflects the Trent 60's attractiveness as the most powerful and reliable aero-derivative gas turbine available and strengthens our role supporting the Middle East's critical energy infrastructure." Rolls-Royce will manufacture and package the equipment at its facilities in Montreal, Canada and Mount Vernon, Ohio, U.S.A.
SARB involves the construction of facilities to transfer oil drilled on 86 wells of the SARB offshore oil field, 120 kilometres northwest of Abu Dhabi. Facilities related to collection and transport will be constructed on two artificial islands. In addition, HDEC will build a facility in Zirku Island to separate gas from crude oil collected in the SARB and Umm Al Lulu oil fields. The Zirku Island oil and gas processing facility will have a daily capacity of 200,000 barrels of oil, equivalent to 160,000 200-liter drums, and 35 million cubic feet of gas, the amount on which about 6,600 gas buses can run.
ADMA-OPCO is 60% owned by the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), with the remaining 40% shareholding is divided between BP, Total and JODCO. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
The Governor of the UAE Central Bank, Sultan bin Nasser Al Suwaidi, has underscored the UAE's efforts to advance financial inclusion and urged for aligning it with the country's efforts to implement the smart government initiative which requires providing all financial services in an electronic, safe and trustworthy way round the clock.
Al Suwaidi made his remarks in his keynote speech read out by Saif Hadef Al Shamsi, Assistant Governor of the UAE Central Bank for Monetary Policy and Financial Stability, at the opening of the '5th Arab Policy Forum on Financial Inclusion' taking place on the 10th and 11th December at the Jumeirah Etihad Towers Hotel in Abu Dhabi.
The Arab Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor, and the German Development Agency, jointly organised the forum.
"In recent years, financial inclusion received attention on the international level, in particular when the G20 group adopted it as a main pillar of the economic and financial development agenda," said Al Suwaidi.
He noted that UAE Central Bank proposed financial inclusion as a key item on the agenda of the 11th GCC Banking Conference on the 'Role of the GCC Banking Sector in Supporting GCC Economies' which took place last month in Abu Dhabi.
Al Suwaidi further noted that among the most important indicators for financial inclusion in the UAE was the total number of current, saving and deposit accounts which went up to 7.3 million, or 86.5 percent of the country's population, by the end of 2012.
More than 80 high-level policymaker representing Central Banks, Ministries of Finance, and financial regulatory, supervisory, and standard-setting bodies from the Arab world are joining financial service providers and representatives from international organisations at the forum.
The two-day event will explore ways to increase access to financial services in Arab countries, discuss challenges to developing global practices in the region and strategies for improving access to finance and ensuring financial stability. Organisers say that this remains particularly important for a region that has the world's highest rates of unemployment at 25 per cent for youth alone and the lowest levels of access to financial services.
In addition, the vast majority of those aged 15 and above in the region, 82 per cent, do not have access to a formal account. Affording opportunities to many more people in the Arab world, say the forum's organisers, will take forward-looking policies that enable those currently outside the financial mainstream to gain access and, with it, the opportunity to improve their lives.
Among the key government interventions expected to be discussed are the establishment of consumer protection guidelines and specific regulations allowing mostly unregulated microfinance providers to transform into fully-fledged financial institutions serving low-income people. A more inclusive financial system would not only increase stability but also address concerns raised by the Arab Spring, including the need for a more equitable economic system, according to organisers. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
The State Security Court of the Federal Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi has adjourned the hearing in the trial of the Muslim Brotherhood group until 17th December in order to continue to hear the defence case of the suspects.
The State Security Court, presided over by Judge Mohammed al-Jarrah al-Tunaiji, took the decision at the 4th session of the trial of the group.
Fifteen suspects went on trial in yesterday's session, while nine others were absent after the court received a letter from the punitive establishment stating that they abstained from attendance.
Today's session was attended by three of the lawyers of the suspects, fifteen representatives of the media, seven representatives of civil society organisations (three from Emirates Human Rights Association and four from Emirates Lawyers Association), five relatives of the suspects and a representative of the Egyptian Embassy. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
At the invitation of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, President of Turkmenistan, has paid a two-day official visit to the United Arab Emirates.
During the visit, the Presidents of the two countries exchanged their views on current conditions and development perspectives of UAE-Turkmen relations, and further development in economic, social and cultural fields, as well as the regional and global issues of mutual interest.
The Heads of States, noting the importance of cooperation in economic field, have expressed their desire to reinforce this type of cooperation on the basis of mutual interests. They both expressed their intentions to increase joint efforts for broadening and increasing cooperation between the two states in the fields of oil-and-gas, oil-processing, the chemical industry and renewable energy.
The two Heads of State, recognising the role of humanitarian cooperation as the most important means of making nations come together, for deepening their mutual understanding, enriching their respective cultures, and developing relations of friendship and cooperation, have agreed to encourage and strengthen cultural exchanges and broaden cooperation efforts in education and science, tourism, and sport.
The two Heads of State have declared that terrorism, and trans-national crime and illegal circulation of drugs and psychotropic agents are some of the main threats to peace and security in the world and confirmed their readiness to develop cooperation in countering these challenges.
The President of the UAE and the President of Turkmenistan paid special attention to reinforcing the instrumental role of the United Nations in addressing global issues of international peace and security, sustainable development, and in preventing and pacifying conflicts.
Moreover, the mutual intentions of the United Arab Emirates and Turkmenistan to create a climate dominated by trust and mutual understanding, to reinforce stability at both regional and international levels, were emphasised, in addition to the importance of solving global issues only through peaceful means and diplomatic methods.
The parties have confirmed their agreement on many issues of international and regional politics and expressed their wish to conduct regular consultations on current related issues.
Mr. Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov expressed his appreciation and gratitude for the invitation and hospitality, and in turn invited His Highness Sheikh Khalifa to pay an official visit to Turkmenistan. The invitation was received with gratitude. The date of this visit will be agreed upon through diplomatic channels. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
Bilateral trade between the UAE and China has surged nearly 14 per cent in the first half of this year, with GCC countries accounting for up to 70 per cent of China's trade with Arab countries.
This was announced at a press conference held at Expo Centre Sharjah to announce the details of the 12th Chinese Commodities Fair Sharjah (CCFS), commencing next Monday.
In value terms, from January to June, trade between the countries reached US$21.435 billion, a 13.68 per cent growth from the same period last year, with China's exports to the UAE standing at US$15.444 billion and exports from the UAE to China touching US$5.991 billion.
In 2012, bilateral trade between China and the UAE stood at US$40.42 billion, according to Chinese Customs statistics.
The press conference was addressed by Saif Mohammed Al Midfa, CEO, Expo Centre Sharjah and Patrick Zheng Shuo, General Manager, China Machinery and Electronics Products Exhibition Centre (Chinamex).
"The Chinese Commodities Fair Sharjah has been playing the role of a catalyst in boosting bilateral trade between the UAE and China. The UAE is now China's largest export market and the second largest trade partner among Arab countries. The 12th edition of the show will continue to cement the trade and economic activities between the countries and offer immense opportunities for traders and investors from both sides," said Mr. Midfa.
Patrick Zheng Shuo said, "For its 12th edition, the show will focus on Chinese green food and visitors can expect fresh fruits, vegetables '&' grains, dry fruits, beverages and frozen food. Apart from the green food, there will be exhibitors displaying fast food and puffed food processing equipment." According to Sharjah Expo Centre, about 150 leading producers and dealers from various Chinese provinces have already booked their space for the show.
"CCFS 2013 will also feature Chinese traditional folk arts and Chinese kite making to be presented by the Traditional Folk Art Institution from Mountain Tai of Shandong Province, apart from the display and sale of paintings by famous Chinese artists," added Zheng Shuo.
For the first time, exhibitors from South Korea will also take part in CCFS 2013, displaying health and nutritional products. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
The National Bank of Abu Dhabi's (NBAD) Sukuk Income Fund will pay its investors a semi-annual distribution equal to 2.675 percent of the net asset value (NAV) of US$5.1831, being the NAV as at November 28th, 2013. Accordingly, each unit in the Fund will receive a dividend pay-out of US$0.1386.
The Fund achieved a profit equivalent to US$942,773.25 from 30th May 2013 to 28th November 2013.
"We are very pleased to close a highly challenging year with an outstanding result. The performance of the Sukuk Income Fund has been unique amongst the peer group with an attractive level of income and total return achieved at a low level of volatility. In a market that has seen returns to investors shrink, we are particularly proud to be able to offer this level of income and total return," said Mark Watts, the Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer of NBAD's Asset Management Group.
Investors, who have successfully subscribed to the fund by November 27th, 2013 or prior, are eligible to receive dividends.
Ali Soner Guney, the Fixed Income Fund Manager at NBAD, commented, "Our performance in 2013 underlines our ability to protect and grow value amidst challenging market conditions. For 2014, we have a more constructive market view. Improved credit quality, strong macro dynamics and favourable liquidity in the region highlight the attractiveness of investing into MENA Sukuk market." The NBAD Sukuk Income Fund is an open-ended and actively managed product and distributes income semi-annually. The Fund's structure and its investments are regularly reviewed by the well-known Shari'a scholar Sheikh Nizam Mohammed Saleh Yaquby, to ensure continued adherence to Shari'a principles. It is open to institutional and individual investors who can invest as low as USD500 either through lump sum or regular investment plans. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
In a step that reinforces its commitment to growth in the manufacturing and industrial sector, Dubai Investments PJSC has announced that 11 of its nearly 40 subsidiaries are currently participating in the first 'Made in U.A.E.' Exhibition at Expo Centre Sharjah.
At the exhibition, DI is showcasing the leading-edge capabilities of the company and its subsidiaries, including Glass LLC, Emirates Building Systems, Globalpharma, Emirates Extruded Polystyrene, Marmum Dairy Farm, Dubai Cranes, Emirates Extrusion Factory, Lite-Tech Industries, Labtec, Gulf Dynamic Services and Gulf Metal Craft.
Being held under the patronage of His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, the Made in U.A.E. Exhibition runs till December 12th and has brought together over 100 exhibitors from different sectors, including industrial products, foodstuff, building materials, furniture and home decor.
The Made in U.A.E.' exhibition is an important platform for SMEs, which account for 92% of the country's total registered companies, 86% of the workforce in the private sector and 40% of the GDP. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
Year-to-date volumes on the Dubai Gold & Commodities Exchange (DGCX) increased by 51 per cent in November, with over 12.9 million contracts.
Leading the volumes surge was the currency sector, which registered a year-to-date rise of 55 per cent. In November, DGCX accounted for 40 per cent of the total value of the Indian Rupee futures traded globally on exchange, the highest market share of any exchange. The Exchange's flagship product also saw a six per cent month-on-month and a 43 per cent year-to-date increase in volumes. Japanese Yen futures also showed a substantial year-to-date rise of 61 per cent to reach 16,840 contracts.
Sensex futures continued its robust growth since its launch earlier this year, hitting its second highest monthly value of US$178 million in November with 8,591 contracts. Silver was the key performer among precious metals with year-to-date volumes rising 37 per cent in November, to aggregate 14,939 contracts. – Khaleej Times
posted on 11/12/2013
The UAE will add 29.2 million passengers over the next four years at a compound annual growth rate, or CAGR, of 6.6 per cent as total global air passenger numbers are expected to rise to 3.91 billion by 2017, the International Air Transport Association, or Iata, said on Tuesday.
As airlines across the globe expect to see a 31 per cent increase in passenger numbers between 2012 and 2017, the Middle East will report the strongest international passenger growth with a 6.3 per cent CAGR, the global body said in its Airline Industry Forecast.
The robust outlook for regional air traffic comes in the wake of a stellar 14 per cent year-on-year growth in passenger traffic recorded by Middle East carriers in October, much higher than the global average of 6.9 per cent.
In 2012, a total of around 80 million passengers were handled by Dubai International Airport (57.7 million), Abu Dhabi International Airport (14.7 million) and Sharjah International Airport (7.5 million).
The Iata said that by 2017, total passenger numbers are expected to rise to 3.91 billion — an increase of 930 million passengers over the 2.98 billion carried in 2012.
Demand is expected to expand by an average of 5.4 per cent CAGR between 2013 and 2017.
"By comparison, global passenger growth expanded by 4.3 per cent CAGR between 2008 and 2012, largely reflecting the negative impact of the 2008 global financial crisis and recession. Of the new passengers, approximately 292 million will be carried on international routes and 638 million on domestic routes,” the Iata said in its latest forecast.
The emerging economies of the Middle East and Asia-Pacific will see the strongest international passenger growth with a CAGR of 6.3 per cent and 5.7 per cent, respectively, followed by Africa and Latin America with a CAGR of 5.3 per cent and 4.5 per cent. The Montreal-based trade association of 240 airlines said routes within or connected to China will be the single-largest driver of growth, accounting for 24 per cent of new passengers during the forecast period. Of the anticipated 227.4 million additional passengers, 195 million will be domestic and 32.4 million will be international.
The Asia-Pacific region, including China, is expected to add around 300 million additional passengers by the end of the current forecast horizon. Of these, around 225 million or 75 per cent are expected to be domestic passengers.
With 677.8 million domestic passengers in 2017, the US will continue to be the largest single market for domestic passengers, although it will add only 70 million passengers over the forecast period (a 2.2 per cent CAGR). "The fact that the Asia-Pacific region — led by China — and the Middle East will deliver the strongest growth over the forecast period is not surprising. Governments in both areas recognise the value of the connectivity provided by aviation to drive global trade and development. Similar opportunities exist for developing regions in Africa and Latin America. To reap the benefit, governments in those regions will need to change their view of aviation from a luxury cash cow to a utilitarian powerful draft horse to pull the economy forward,” said Tony Tyler, the Iata's director-general and chief executive officer.
"Globally, aviation supports some 57 million jobs and US$2.2 trillion in economic activity.”
While international passenger numbers are expected to rise by 25 per cent from 1.2 billion in 2012 to 1.5 billion in 2017, bringing 292 million additional passengers, the UAE will add 29.2 million passengers, nearly as many as China.
"For international traffic, routes between the Middle East and Asia-Pacific will see the strongest growth,” the Iata said.
Uzbekistan (10.3 per cent) has displaced Kazakhstan (nine per cent) as the fastest-growing market for international passenger traffic. – Khaleej Times
posted on 11/12/2013
As part of its drive to further improve passenger convenience and online experience, Air Arabia, the first and largest low-cost carrier in the Middle East and North Africa, yesterday unveiled its new website. Equipped with a number of features intended to make flying with Air Arabia even more pleasant experience, the new website provides quick and easy guide allowing passengers to plan and book with greater convenience.
The homepage of the new website contains readily visible banners to their monthly promotions such as hottest flights and most popular places, which provide a combination of special flight rates, offering significant savings when booking at any given time, exclusively for online bookings.
The new interface allows passengers to have quick and easy access to most important travel needs such as checking flights, purchasing air tickets, online check-in, viewing reservations, changing flights, seat selection, pre-booking baggage, and many more. The new website also offers a comprehensive destination guide highlighting important information about each city that Air Arabia serves.
Speaking of the new website, Adel Ali, Group CEO of Air Arabia, said, "At Air Arabia, we strive to listen to our passengers, and improve the level of service we offer to our ever growing customer base. The enhanced design and features of the new website are aimed at serving three different categories of customers: those who know where they seek to travel; customers who wish to receive information or help once they decided the destination; and lastly those who need advice to identify a destination. The new website has taken into consideration these requirements, and we are confident that our customers will find significant value in the new website while they continue to take advantage of our value-for-money offerings." Currently offered in eight languages, English, Arabic, French, Russian, Spanish, German, Italian and Turkish, the new website will see the addition of more languages in the months to come.
The launch of the new website comes shortly after Air Arabia unveiled its mobile website, accessible from any smart phone, as well as its iPhone app that is available for free in the Apple Apps store. – Emirates News Agency, WAM
posted on 11/12/2013
Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza), the flagship free zone operation of Economic Zones World (EZW), will be participating in Automechanika Shanghai 2013, being held at Shanghai New International Expo Centre from December 10-13 in China.
Jafza will be highlighting Middle East's rapidly growing automotive markets at the international trade fair for automotive parts, equipment and service suppliers. Jafza, as the Middle East region's trade and logistics hub, seeks to attract more Chinese and other Asian auto industry majors into the Free Zone, who are interested in expanding their presence in the region.
Ibrahim Mohamed Al Janahi, Deputy CEO and Chief Commercial Officer of Jafza, commenting on the Jafza participation in Automechanika Shanghai 2013 said: "The automotive sector in the GCC and the Middle East is buoyant and growing in double digits. The automotive aftermarket in the region is predicted to hit USD 14.4 billion in 2016. This provides huge opportunities for Asian multinationals in the auto sector in the region. We would like auto industry majors in Asia to come to Jafza to take advantage of the growing opportunities in the region. Jafza is the only regional trade and logistics hub in the world which is located between a world-class seaport and an international airport.”
The automobile sector in the region has grown between 20 and 40% in the last couple of years. The spare parts market during the same time has seen almost 25% percent increase.
Jafza is currently home to more than 500 automotive companies which includes global names such as Honda, Nissan, Ford, GM, Daimler & Chrysler, Caterplllar, Mobis, Schaeffler among others. The sector in Jafza generated trade worth US$4.2 billion in 2012. In the last ten years the number of companies in the sector has grown 7-fold.
Jafza is currently home to over 7,100 world's finest companies, which includes more than 120 Global Fortune 500 enterprises. These companies cater to the entire Middle East region from their respective regional headquarters in Jafza.
Automechanika Shanghai is Asia's largest show for auto parts, accessories, equipment and services. This year's show will have more than 4,400 exhibitors. More than 80,000 buyers and trade visitors from all over the world are expected to attend this one-stop platform for trading, brand building, marketing, information exchange and networking opportunities. – Emirates 24│7
posted on 11/12/2013
Over 139,000 counterfeit products worth Dh35 million have been seized by the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (DED) this year, and the number is expected to rise with public's heightened awareness on commercial fraud, officials in the capital said on Tuesday.
Government entities and private firms are therefore gearing up to fight this phenomenon especially as Expo 2020 approaches and the UAE economy flourishes.
"The market is currently ripe, the country is booming and people want to exploit this fact. Counterfeit products in imports and exports are being stopped and seized,” said Sharaf Al Hijazin, from Al Tamimi and Company, a UAE-based law firm.
Al Hijazin was speaking to Gulf News during the fifth Anti-Commercial Fraud Exhibition that opened in the capital's Marina Mall on Tuesday where genuine and counterfeit products are on display side-by-side for four days to educate potential consumers.
DED officials stated that the large number is due to a greater number of consumer complaints. "With the introduction of awareness campaigns, pamphlets and after our many efforts to combat this problem, we have begun to receive more reports on suspicious products. We have therefore managed to confiscate four times the amount of illegal items this year than we did last year,” Mohammad Rashid Al Rumaithi, Acting Executive Director of Commercial Affairs at the DED, told Gulf News.
The DED had conducted 6,130 inspection visits to commercial establishments in Abu Dhabi in the form of random checks and based on customer complaints from January till November.
Experts revealed that the most common items of fraud include construction items and sanitary ware. "Sometimes, price is the biggest indication of ingenuity. This, however, does not mean that high prices are automatically associated with quality. Consumers have to be diligent enough to carry out their own research especially when making big investments in items such as mobile phones and car parts. Most companies have a list of agents on their websites that are authorised to sell their items,” Al Hijazin said.
Good finishing and the presence of a trademark are usually signs of genuine products, according to Al Hijazin.
Meanwhile, Al Rumaithi urged members of the public to report any suspicious items to the Department as fakes often have no guarantee of longevity and may have side effects pertaining to health and safety especially in cases of counterfeit electronics, which can cause fires. – Gulf News
posted on 11/12/2013
Emiratis and Gulf citizens may now renew their ID cards while all residents of the UAE can follow up the status of their applications.
All GCC citizens can now renew their identity cards in just two minutes on their smartphones, while other nationalities will soon follow as part of a five-service package launched by the Emirates Identity Authority.
The innovative services, to be initially available only to Emiratis and Gulf citizens, can also be accessed on tablets.
The authority, which launched the initiative on Tuesday, said the move would save money, time and effort for all applicants.
Emirates ID Director-General Dr Eng. Ali Mohamed Al Khouri said on Tuesday that the move was aimed at boosting the ‘portable government' concept and making it the most advanced in the world. "Applicants may easily finish the transactions by simply using their ID cards for immediate verification, as well as fast and accurate processing beyond expectations.”
The first of the smart services packages has been experimentally launched on Android-operated applications in both Arabic and English. "Emiratis and Gulf citizens may now renew their ID cards while all residents of the UAE can follow up the status of their applications, specify a user file, submit complaints and suggestions, get alerts and locate the approved centres and typing offices.”
Dr Khouri said the new services, available round the clock, would cut down the set procedures by half. "The smart package shall save customers around 80 million minutes and over Dh120 million based on the applications processed which hit four million every year.”
He said all these services would be available to all residents during the first quarter of 2014.
The Authority spared no effort to enhance customer services, he said.
"The Emirates Identity Authority has almost finished connecting all government entities electronically, and that shall simplify and expedite official transactions, yet in an accurate technique.”
Dr Khouri said the authority was giving more attention to the development of its infrastructure to heighten security aspects and offer authentic smart applications on cellphones and tablets. "We are exerting our best efforts to launch the second package of ID smart services in the first quarter of 2014 to give an added value to identity verification procedures and policies locally and worldwide.”
The authority may read and verify the entries of any ID card through the NFC technology, and hence there is no need for electronic card readers.
"An applicant may also follow up the status of his or her application any time on a smartphone or tablet. Also, the friendly smart services, particularly the alert features, will encourage customers to easily register, update and renew their credentials on time.” – Khaleej Times
posted on 11/12/2013
Dome Exhibitions yesterday announced the second edition of the Abu Dhabi Electronics Shopper (ADES 2014) is set to showcase world-class innovative gadgets and leading retailers at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (Adnec) from February 26th to March 1st, 2014. The four-day exhibition is expected to attract more than 100,000 visitors.
The Abu Dhabi Electronics Shopper is presently the largest consumer electronics exhibition that is held in the capital city and witnesses a convergence of electronics retailers, suppliers and consumers under one roof. The 2014 edition of the event that will span close to 10,000 sq metre in exhibition space at Adnec is anticipated to draw the participation of more than 50 exhibitors and generate over Dh50 million in sales volume. Apart from a host of consumers, the exhibition also brings together IT professionals, technology enthusiasts, students and regional traders.
Dony Cyril, Director, Dome Exhibitions, said: "The electronics retail industry has been one of the fastest growing industries in Abu Dhabi in recent years. The remarkable success of the 2013 Abu Dhabi Electronics Shopper has encouraged us to host the second edition on a much larger scale and over twice the exhibition space. We are confident the event will prove to be another strong crowd puller and emerge as one of the largest gatherings of the region's leading ICT retailers and suppliers.”
Antoine Georges, Managing Director, Dome Exhibitions, said: "Abu Dhabi is today one of the world's wealthiest economies. The capital city is an ideal choice for holding mega consumer electronics and technology exhibitions of phenomenal dimensions and reach. Judging by the overwhelming response we have received from both retailers and bargain hunters, we hope to make the ADES Abu Dhabi's must-visit annual consumer electronics festival.”
Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Chief Commercial Officer at Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (Adnec), said: "The inaugural 2013 event was not only a tremendous success but it supported Adnec's desire to continue to grow our portfolio of trade and consumer events. We are excited to be welcoming such an engaging event back to our facility in 2014. As ever, with the second edition of the event we challenge ourselves to improve on previous editions, attracting even more local and region consumers, manufacturers and suppliers from what is a growing and dynamic sector.”
The 2013 show that primarily featured smartphones, notebooks/tablets and digital cameras drew 35 exhibitors and close to 68,000 visitors. – Emirates 24│7
posted on 11/12/2013
The Zayed Charity Marathon scheduled to take place in Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi on December 13 to help raise funds and awareness for the US Healthy Kidney Foundation.
The international marathon is held under the patronage of Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.
Organised by the Armed Forces Officers Club in collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (Seha), the marathon will be conducted in races.
Pupils and special needs can participate in the 5km marathon, while everyone can be part of the 10km marathon.
Exceptional cash prizes will be awarded to the top three runners. First prize winner will receive Dh10,000, while the second and third prize winners will receive Dh7,000 and Dh5,000 respectively.
Top three winners in the 10km race will receive Dh40,000, Dh20,000 and Dh10,000 respectively.
Starting from now, the registration can be done online at www.premiermarathons.com/zayedmarathon.
Registration fee is Dh100 per person. The marathon will start from 4pm until 9pm. – Emirates News Agency, WAM